How to Fix and Repair Oversized Outlook PST File?

  •   Written By
  • Published on
    June 5th, 2018
  • Updated on
    March 16, 2022
  • Read Time
    5 minutes

Summary:- What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you face corruption in an Outlook data file? It that scanpst.exe utility, the Inbox Repair tool? Microsoft provides this built-in repair tool with its Outlook client to scan and repair PST files. Sometimes the scanpst.exe utility may fail to solve Outlook large pst file problems. In this article, you will get to learn how you can repair oversized Outlook PST files.

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Microsoft Outlook is a popular email client that offers you a wide range of features. Apart from being an email application, it includes a contact manager, calendar, task manager, note-taking, journal, and web browser. It creates an Outlook data file, commonly known as PST, to store emails and other data which include contacts, calendars, tasks, notes, journals, as well as attachments. PST (personal storage table) file is of two types: ANSI and Unicode. The older versions like Outlook 2002 and earlier use ANSI format to store PST files. Whereas Outlook 2003 and later versions use Unicode format. The ANSI and Unicode PST files have different size limitations.

What is Oversized PST File?

A PST file is called oversized when it crosses its maximum size limit. An ANSI PST file can store the mailbox content up to 2 GB. On the other hand, a Unicode PST file has a maximum size limitation of 20 GB (Outlook 2003 & 2007) and 50 GB (Outlook 2010 & later versions). The fact says that an oversized PST file is always prone to corruption. In fact, the size limitation issue is considered one of the main reasons for corruption.

If you’re an active Outlook user, you’re likely to send and receive a large number of email messages each and every day. Having a large number of mailbox data will increase the PST file size. And one day, it’ll reach its maximum size. Whenever this happens, you’re likely to face severe problems including Outlook performance issues. And the situation becomes worse when the PST file crosses its maximum size.

Below are the error messages you may encounter while trying to open a corrupt PST file:

Common Errors for Oversized PST File

  • The filename.pst is not a personal folders file.
  • An unexpected error prevented access to this file. Use ScanDisk to check the disk for errors, and then try using the Inbox Repair tool again.
  • The filename.pst has reached its maximum size limit.
  • Errors have been detected in Outlook PST file. Quit all mail-enabled applications.

How to Fix An Oversized PST File?

If you have a too large PST file, you must do the needful in order to protect it from being Oversized and get corrupted. There are three different ways to deal with an oversized PST file:

  • Split PST File: If you notice that the Outlook data file has reached its maximum size, you can split PST into two or multiple parts. By doing this, you’ll get two or multiple PST files instead of one.
  • Compact PST File: Also, you can compact PST file in order to get enough space to store more mailbox content. You can compress or compact PST files by using the built-in feature of MS Outlook.
  • Remove Duplicate Items: Duplicate items are majorly responsible for an oversized PST file. It may happen that the Outlook data file has a large number of duplicate items which have occupied all the free space. So removing duplicate items from the PST file is a better option to deal with an oversized PST file.

Methods to Repair Oversized Outlook PST file

Method 1 -: Most of the time we prefer using a valid backup which is considered as the best way to recover a corrupt PST file that is too large to be recovered. If you notice anything wrong or encounter an error message while opening a PST file, this means the file is corrupt. You’re lucky if you take regular backup of your PST files. You can easily restore the PST files from the backup. But if there’s no backup available, you should use the Inbox Repair tool, commonly known as the scanpst.exe utility. To run the Inbox Repair tool, you must locate its executable file.

Note: The scanpst.exe location varies according to Outlook as well as the Windows system you’re using. Interested users may refer to this article – SCANPST Location – Locate the Inbox Repair Tool

Method 2 -: Sometimes it might be a challenging task to repair oversized Outlook PST files. If you have a large PST file to repair, the scanpst.exe utility may take ample time. Even there’s no guarantee that the Inbox Repair tool will surely work. In such a situation, you should always look forward to a professional solution like Advanced Outlook Recovery tool. It’s an amazing Outlook Recovery solution provided by SysInfoTools Software. Unlike the Inbox Repair tool, it doesn’t take much time to scan and repair PST files of any size. In fact, there’s no such size limitation, i.e. you can select a PST file up to 80 GB with no problem.

The “batch recovery” feature is the best part of this Outlook Recovery tool. This means you can select any number of PST files at a time and recover data from them simultaneously. To repair oversized Outlook PST files, you have three recovery modes: Standard, Advanced, and Deep.


The Outlook Recovery tool provided by SysInfoTools Software is available with the free demo version. Before purchasing the software, you must download its demo for free evaluation purposes. By using the demo version, you can save the first 25 email items of each mailbox folder of the selected PST files. To overcome this limitation, you must place an order for the licensed version of this software. With this amazing Outlook Recovery tool, it’s no more a challenge to repair oversized Outlook PST file.

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